Have you ever wondered why gluten sensitivities seem so common now as compared to say twenty years ago? And that many who travel and indulge in a French baguette are mysteriously symptom free? A chemical known as glyphosate just might be a HUGE piece in this puzzle.
Danny started making wood fired pizza for many reasons, but high on the list has to do with this herbicide. You see, conventional wheat produced in the United States serves up a whopping dose of glyphosate.
Beginning in the 1990’s, the US started using glyphosate as a drying agent 7-10 days before harvesting wheat and grain crops. By spraying glyphosate on a field, the entire field senesces at the same time making harvesting much more efficient. But this efficiency comes at a cost.
Not only does glyphosate cause grain crops to senesce, but it kills all the living organisms in the soil, and you guessed it, the microbiome of your gut. This leads to intestinal permeability (aka leaky gut) which is the precursor to food sensitivities.
"Have you ever wondered why gluten sensitivities seem so common now as compared to say twenty years ago?"
Although this practice is the norm in the US, there are many European countries that have banned the method. And this might be one explanation for the curious phenomenon of symptom free wheat consumption when overseas.
Here at Boone Dog Pizza, we make our own dough from carefully sourced glyphosate free organic wheat. Our flours come from Cairnsprings Mills of the Skagit Valley in Washington and Central Milling of Utah.
Cairnsprings Mills sources their wheat from farmers that are committed to building soil health, and the farmers sign contracts that they will not use glyphosate as a harvest aid. Cairnsprings uses a stone milling technique which conserves more of the bran and most of the germ maintaining the nutrients, antioxidants, oils, flavor, and fiber of the grain. Therefore, their flours are not artificially enriched or treated, no dough stabilizers or conditioners are used, and the flours are not bromated or bleached.
Central Milling works to build partnerships between the farmer, the miller, and the baker. They state, “We are the farmer, the miller, and the baker working together to preserve American farmland for tomorrow while providing the highest quality flour and grains to the bakers of today.” They partner with farmers that grow their grains sustainably while optimizing flavor and nutrient content. And grains are milled using a slow and cool process preserving nutrition and enhancing baking performance.
In contrast, industrial mills remove the germ in order to create a shelf stable flour, and these commercial flours are artificially enriched because the milling process strips the grain of its nutrition. And of course, the grain is harvested using glyphosate.
If you’re looking to reduce glyphosate exposure, make it a priority to carefully source your wheat. Your wheat choices not only influence the health of your gut, but also the health of our food systems and environment. As it turns out, the way wheat is farmed, harvested, milled, what’s added to it, and the way it’s prepared actually has far reaching implications. We’ll raise a slice of pizza to that!!